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Tips for Washing Bedding & Blankets That Smell Like Dog

Pets mean cuddles, laughs and love. Unfortunately, having pets in your home can also mean having stinky bedding and blankets. The good news is that the right odor removal products can keep linens smelling fresh despite your pets. Read on to learn how to get dog smell out of blankets and bedding. 

Why Do Bedding and Blankets Get Pet Odors?

Bedding and blankets can develop pet odors for a variety of reasons, including: 

  • Urine: Animals, especially dogs, may urinate on bedding and on blankets in their kennels or crates, leaving behind pungent smells. 
  • Hair: Shed hairs that harbor sweat and bacteria can accumulate on linens, contributing to odors. 
  • Dirt: When your pet goes outside, they can track in dirt and debris that causes smells. 
  • Hygiene: If you don’t bathe your pet regularly, sweat and bacteria from their skin can transfer to linens. 

While you may notice pet odors in any season, they may be worse during the summer months. Humidity can make smells like urine more intense, and your pet usually sheds and sweats during warm weather. 

Why Does My Dog Pee on His Blanket?

Dogs may have accidents occasionally, but frequently urinating on pet blankets could indicate a behavioral or medical issue. While it’s true that dogs do urinate to mark territory, they usually don’t pee where they sleep. If you’re frequently finding urine on the pet bed or blanket, talk to your veterinarian, as your dog may have incontinence or another health problem. Should the problem turn out to be emotional distress or a behavior issue, the vet can give you tips on how to manage it. 

Preparing for Washing 

Before you start laundering bedding and blankets for pet odors, you need to get your linens ready for the washing machine by following these steps: 

  • Head outside and shake off any loose pet hair or dander. 
  • Read the care tags on the bedding, checking for special washing instructions. 
  • Inspect the bedding for visible stains and give it a sniff test to determine if there are particularly smelly areas. 
  • Sprinkle stains with baking soda and then spray with a solution of one cup water and two parts vinegar. Let it rest for 10 minutes and then rinse with cold water. 
  • Apply Fresh Wave Laundry Booster to areas that smell and let the linens sit for another 10 minutes. 

Washing Bedding and Blankets with Pet Odors

Always refer to the care instructions tags for how to wash dog blankets and bedding. The following instructions are general and will work for many linens. However, you may need to modify the wash temperature or use a special type of detergent for some blankets and bedding. Here’s the basic set of instructions to use as a starting point: 

  • Put the blankets in the washing machine, spreading them out to keep the drum balanced. 
  • Set the washing machine to a heavy soil or bedding setting. 
  • Choose hot water for the temperature. 
  • Add a high-quality detergent of your choice. 
  • Pour in two capfuls of Fresh Wave Laundry Booster during the wash or rinse cycle. Its plant-based formula helps to eliminate odors while leaving behind a pleasant scent that comes from botanicals rather than harsh chemical perfumes. 

How Often Should You Wash Your Blankets? 

It’s not enough to simply know how to get pee smell out of blankets and how to deal with other pet odors on linens. To keep bedding smelling fresh, you’ll need to wash frequently enough to keep the fabric clean. Aim to launder bedding and blankets once every two weeks for best results. If you notice smells sooner or your pet is outside on a muddy day, wash them sooner. 

Drying Your Bedding and Blankets

Drying your pet bedding and blankets in the dryer is the best option for odor control. Here’s how to do it: 

  • Set the dryer on the highest heat setting to kill any remaining odor-causing bacteria. 
  • Choose a bedding or bulk setting if your dryer has one. 
  • Drop in one or two wool dryer balls to fluff the fabric and help the bedding dry more quickly. 

When the timer sounds, check to see if the bedding is completely dry. Heavy bedding may need to go through more than one dry cycle to remove all moisture. Don’t put damp bedding back on your bed or in your pet’s bed as it could develop mildew. 

Maintaining Freshness

In addition to laundering every two weeks, follow these tips to keep your bedding fresh going forward: 

  • Bathe your pet regularly with plant-powered, nontoxic Fresh Wave Dog Shampoo
  • Wipe off your pet’s feet with a damp cloth when they come in from outdoors on muddy days. 
  • Use a waterproof mattress protector on your bed to guard against accidents. 
  • Clean hard surfaces in beds, crates and kennels with a cloth dampened with Fresh Wave Laundry Booster once per month. After the first wipe-down, repeat with a cloth that is just dampened with warm water. 
  • Place Fresh Wave Odor-Eliminating Gel near your bed or stick Fresh Wave Odor-Eliminating Pods near pet beds. 
  • Keep the inside of your washing machine clean by wiping it down with Fresh Wave Laundry Booster periodically. 

Get On Your Way to Fresher Pet Bedding

By pretreating, washing and drying linens properly, you can eliminate unpleasant odors, and with a little ongoing effort, you can lower the likelihood of their return. The key is to use high-quality products like Fresh Wave Odor Eliminators, which neutralize the compounds that cause odors with plant-based ingredients rather than masking them with synthetic perfumes. 

How do you deal with pet odors in your home? Share your tips and stories in the comments sections below.